Bouldering Pads for sleeping

Original Post
Leftwich · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2009 · Points: 10

I have a friend getting into bouldering with his little girls. He was asking about using boulder pads to make the back of the van usable for camping. I don't boulder much and have an ancient pad but I told him I did have friends who both loved and hated sleeping on their pads. Anyone have any advice on what brand of pads are OK to sleep on?

Rob Gordon · · Hollywood, CA · Joined Feb 2009 · Points: 105

A good pad is bad for sleeping on. A couple of heavily used trifolds would be okay.

Best option is just to go to a foam outlet store and buy some 3 inch foam.

Don Ferris · · Eldorado Springs · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 175

I have a metolius magnum trifold which is the perfect size but as Rob mentioned, it's not the most comfortable sleeping pad (too hard.) That being said, I sleep on it a lot and don't boulder much. I got the idea from a friend with a mad rock trifold. That thing is way softer. I'd go that route if I were to do it over.

bdyer12 Dyer · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2015 · Points: 0


Chris Nebel · · Roseville, CA · Joined May 2015 · Points: 75

I have a Metolius pad and I've slept on it a few times but I try not to do it too often. It's a pretty firm, I wouldn't say it's comfortable, but it gets the job done in a pinch. I almost always bring a real sleeping pad though. Too bad, because it fits perfectly in the back of my Jeep.

Joe Garibay · · Ventura, Ca · Joined Apr 2014 · Points: 90

I've slept on a madrock pad like a baby. It's pretty soft these days. Have to prop your legs up with a bag or clothes though.

Clint White aka Faulted Geologist · · Lawrence, KS · Joined Jan 2015 · Points: 158

The BD yellow black half fold from years ago is rock hard, yet still far superior to the floor of minivan considering all the plastic coated nubbins the chairs would go in to. It is really not bad to sleep on, and beats setting up camp on marginal CO mountain roadside areas when you pull in late.

We also use it as a couch for the kids on movie night, and a dirtbag guest bed. We just warn people about the goat shit from Horseshit Canyon Ranch in AR.

Paul Hutton · · Dirtbaggin' western US · Joined Mar 2012 · Points: 701

I've slept on my guide's boulder pad while climbing for a week in Siurana. No complaints, here. He, himself, used boulder pads for his bed in his travel van.

Wilburn · · Cheyenne, WY · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 350

Pads definitely work as beds in a pinch, but the issue with using them regularly as a bed is that you compress the foam, which diminishes the amount of cushion experienced. Think of it like packing out a ski boot.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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